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Stories this week at Wake Forest University

January 7, 2008

WAKE FOREST TO WATCH, REFLECT ON INAUGURATION – Wake Forest will mark the significance of President-elect Barack Obama’s Jan. 20 inauguration with public viewings of the televised proceedings and a panel discussion.  The community is invited to attend.  Members of the media are welcome, and interviews with participants can be arranged. 

  • The Office of Multicultural Affairs and the Student Union will host viewings of the inauguration at 11:30 a.m. in Brendle Recital Hall and Benson University Center’s Pugh Auditorium. 
  • Several Wake Forest faculty members, staff and students will present personal reflections on the inauguration at 4 p.m. in the Z. Smith Reynolds Library atrium. The event, titled “The Dream Realized? What Barack Obama’s Election Means to America,” will include senior Fred Parent reading an essay, “What to the African-American is the Fourth of November?” written by his father, Anthony Parent, a professor of history.  Other speakers will include Rhon Manigault, assistant professor of religion; two members of Wake Forest’s Student Government, Jermyn Davis, president, and Matt Triplett, speaker of the house; Wanda Brown, associate director of the ZSR Library; and James Bryant, visiting assistant professor of American ethnic studies.  Richard Heard, associate professor of music, will sing to close out the program.  Speakers will be available for comment at a reception following the event.

Contact: Pam Barrett, or (336) 758-5237.


SMITHSONIAN INAUGURATION EVENT FEATURES WFU DEBATERS – Two members of Wake Forest’s debate team will join students from five other universities to debate the priorities of the Obama administration at a Smithsonian Institution event tied to the presidential inauguration.  The debates will take place from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Jan. 19 at the National Museum of Natural History’s Baird Auditorium.  The Inaugural Debate Series is presented by the National Museum of African American History and Culture in cooperation with the White House Initiative on Historically Black Colleges and Universities and the Debate Consortium, with support from the Presidential Inaugural Committee.  Top collegiate debaters will debate key issues facing the new administration.  Wake Forest students will meet students from Michigan State University to debate energy and climate change at 9:30 a.m.  “We’re thrilled and proud to be a part of the activities surrounding this historic inauguration,” said Ross Smith, director of debate at Wake Forest.  “Outreach and promotion of debate in the public sphere is an important part of our mission.”  Media is invited to cover the event in Washington. The debaters are also available for interviews on campus before they leave.

Contact: Cheryl Walker, or 336-758-5237.


EXPERT AVAILABLE TO DISCUSS INAUGURAL ADDRESS – Presidents can put their personal stamp on a number of different Inauguration Day events, but this is especially true during the inaugural address, according to John Dinan, associate professor of political science. Inaugural addresses have usually been an occasion to unify the country, express continuity with founding principles, and chart a course for the future. The most memorable inaugural addresses were delivered by:

  • Jefferson – “We are all Republicans, we are all Federalists”
  • Lincoln – “With malice toward none, with charity for all ...”
  • Franklin Roosevelt – “... the only thing we have to fear is fear itself”
  • Kennedy – “... ask not what your country can do for you—ask what you can do for your country”
  • and Reagan – “In the present crisis, government is not the solution to our problem; government is the problem.”

Dinan is available to comment on Inauguration Day events, including the inaugural address.

Contact: Audrey Fannin, or (336) 758-5237.


MARTIN LUTHER KING JR. DAY CELEBRATED ON CAMPUS – Wake Forest will celebrate the life of Martin Luther King Jr. at three annual events held Jan. 17-19.   

  • 11th Annual MLK Basketball Tournament; 12:30 p.m. - 8 p.m., Jan. 17; Reynolds Gym, Wake Forest.  The tournament brings together intramural teams from Johnson C. Smith University, North Carolina A&T, North Carolina Central University, the University of North Carolina at Greensboro, Wake Forest and Winston-Salem State University, which will compete toward a championship game.  The event will also include slam-dunk and three-point shot contests.  
  • 4th Annual MLK GospelFest; 3 p.m., Jan. 18; Brendle Recital Hall, Wake Forest.  This year’s concert will feature renowned gospel artist Donald Lawrence.  Several Winston-Salem community choirs including the Wake Forest Gospel Choir, Chi Rho and Winston-Salem State’s Inspirational Voices will also perform.  Admission is $5; free for students with ID and children under 12.
  • 9th Annual WSSU/WFU Joint MLK Celebration:  “On Common Ground: One Dream Can Change the World”; 7 p.m., Jan. 19; Kenneth R. Williams Auditorium, Winston-Salem State.  For the past nine years, Wake Forest and Winston-Salem State have co-sponsored and alternated hosting a keynote event to commemorate King’s life. This year, the event will feature a keynote address at Winston-Salem State by actress and political activist Ruby Dee.  At 4 p.m., Wake Forest will host an invitation-only dinner, where students and faculty from both schools will be awarded the “Building the Dream” award in recognition of their efforts to promote racial diversity and harmony.  Media interested in covering the award dinner should contact the News Service at (336) 758-5237.

Contact: Pam Barrett, or (336) 758-5237.


INITIATIVE BOOSTS DIVERSITY IN ACCOUNTING PROGRAM – Wake Forest’s Calloway School of Business and Accountancy will host top candidates from other campuses, including historically black colleges and universities, at a three-day, on-site introduction to its Master of Science in Accountancy program Jan. 9-11.  The Calloway Accounting Diversity Consortium, now in its second year, is funded by Ernst & Young.  Last year, 16 prospects visited campus, including 11 seniors and fivejuniors.  Eight seniors applied; six were accepted, and three enrolled.  Three of the juniors have applied for admission in the fall 2009 semester.  The event, along with other diversity efforts, helped the Calloway School raise minority representation in its graduate accounting program from 4.5 percent to 15.7 percent in one year.  “Getting students onto campus is the best way to get across the message that Wake Forest is a good school with a good faculty and a good reputation for graduating students who are highly competent in their field,” said Debra Jessup, director of diversity initiatives for the schools of business at Wake Forest.  Participants meet faculty members, students, alumni and representatives from Ernst & Young, as well as learn about the curriculum, the admissions process and the career value of a master’s degree in accounting.  The agenda includes formal presentations, panel discussions, a tour of the campus and informal discussions during meals.  While the event is not open to the public, interested members of the media may arrange to attend selected sessions and/or interview participants by contacting the Wake Forest News Service in advance at (336) 758-5237.

Contact: Eric Frazier, or (336) 758-5237.


LAW SCHOOL ESTABLISHES ENDOWED FUND TO AID THE POOR – Wake Forest’s School of Law has received a significant gift from the Legal Aid Society of Northwest North Carolina to further legal assistance for the poor.  The gift of $465,605 that was granted to the school will create the Legal Aid Society Endowed Fund.  The funds will be used to support the community outreach efforts of the Law School, particularly initiatives that assist those who are economically disadvantaged. The Legal Aid Society of Northwest North Carolina, the state’s first legal aid society, after combining its operations with Legal Aid of North Carolina, sold its building in 2007 and wanted to give the proceeds to the law school, according to the Legal Aid Society’s board president, Cal Adams, of Womble Carlyle Sandridge & Rice.

Contact: Lisa Snedeker, or (336)758-5719.

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